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Year : 1993  |  Volume : 39  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 177

Should full-time staff doctors be allowed private practice?

Dept of Cardiology, Seth GS Medical College, Parel, Bombay.

Correspondence Address:
Y Lokhandwala
Dept of Cardiology, Seth GS Medical College, Parel, Bombay.

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

PMID: 0008051656

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Keywords: Career Choice, Hospitals, Teaching, economics,Human, India, Medical Staff, Hospital, economics,Private Practice, economics,Salaries and Fringe Benefits, Work Schedule Tolerance,

How to cite this article:
Lokhandwala Y. Should full-time staff doctors be allowed private practice?. J Postgrad Med 1993;39:177

How to cite this URL:
Lokhandwala Y. Should full-time staff doctors be allowed private practice?. J Postgrad Med [serial online] 1993 [cited 2023 Jun 6];39:177. Available from:

Full-time staff doctors in teaching hospitals are a disgruntled lot. Among the many reasons for frustration is the fact that their salaries are ridiculously low and do not permit a decent middle-class existence. Thus it is not surprising that very few doctors opt for a full time career out of choice.

It is obvious that drastic changes are required to improve the lot of full-time staff. One alternative about which there has been a lot of discussion but very little action is permitting them private practice. Various modalities about how this could be done have been put forward. These include:

1. Out-of-campus practice outside working hours

2. In-hospital practice outside working hours

3. Creation of private paying wards in public hospitals.

True, private practice will at least monetarily provide for a decent living. However, irrespective of the modality, an inescapable fallout is going to be a decline in patient care, the doctors would by and large give preference to their private patients. The already strained facilities would be preferentially diverted to paying patients. It is also very difficult, especially in work-intensive specialities, for doctors to have the time and energy for a sincere full-time job in addition to taking the strain of private practice. Moreover, people in nonclinical branches cannot be expected to develop a private practice after being out of touch with clinical medicine for a number of years.

What then is the solution? Higher salaries, decent housing and better work facilities. This may sound hackneyed, but it is the only way out.


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Online since 12th February '04
2004 - Journal of Postgraduate Medicine
Official Publication of the Staff Society of the Seth GS Medical College and KEM Hospital, Mumbai, India
Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow